I’ve been open about my disdain for layering. If a perfume isn’t good enough to stand on its own it isn’t good. If it needs to have something else sprayed over the top of it, that exposes the flaws in the original composition. It is why I’ve never reviewed a “layering kit” because it seems like brand laziness. The last couple of years have seen a new version of this where a perfume is designed to be a companion piece to any other perfume. My objections to that are the same as above. Which is why when I received the press release in advance of a sample of D.S. & Durga Crystal Pistil I was dismayed.
David Seth Moltz (l.) and Kavi Ahuja Moltz
The brand owned by married couple by Kavi Ahuja Moltz (Durga) and David Seth Moltz (D.S.) is one of the most eclectic collections I know of. They have run the gamut from very odd to crowd pleaser. In all of them Mr. Moltz has approached his perfumes with a quirky aplomb. That is why when I read Crystal Pistil was meant to be a perfume to add to other perfumes, I was disappointed. I should have remembered Mr. Moltz has a different way of seeing that kind of endeavor. The best thing about Crystal Pistil once I had it in my hands is, I guess it can be layered. What I found was a gorgeously transparent perfume which stood all on its own.
My initial impression was a strong reminder of the Florida Water I grew up with in S. Florida. Mr. Moltz uses a very light amount of orange blossom which he keeps from floating away by pairing it with baie rose. The herbal aspects of that keep the orange blossom from dissipating. This leaves it out there for an equally airy jasmine to join it. Paradisone is used to give a powerful jasmine effect at the same time it is kept light. This is surprisingly balanced especially with an ingredient as portent as Paradisone. Based on the press release this is where I expected this to end. There was a surprise waiting with a slightly less opaque animalic base. Using Civettone, ambrette, and white musks, an expansive deep musk accord floats at just a slightly heavier level than the orange blossom and jasmine.
Crystal Pistil has 8-10 hour longevity and average sillage.
For those of you who layer I’m happy if you find a perfume this works with. It would be like chocolate sauce from a bottle on top of an elegant souffle for me. This is such an exercise in delicacy I wouldn’t want anything to diminish that. Crystal Pistil is more than good enough to be admired for what it is.
Disclosure: This review is based on a sample supplied by DS & Durga.